QPR welcome Everton and the Sky television cameras to Loftus Road tomorrow in a match that could put the R’s back on the road to recovery after a terrible start to the season. At the moment, it’s hard to know what to expect with QPR. They’re playing well in intermittent phases of games but are undermining their good play by conceding amateurish goals that would embarrass a sunday league defence. The international break came at a good time, as it would’ve given the non-travelling players more time to train and work on the defensive fundamentals that have hindered them in recent matches. It doesn’t help playing players out of position (Clint Hill for example) but when the manager has limited options, it’s difficult to completely blame him for mistakes that occur because of this. On the plus side, QPR have several injured players returning which will help Hughes pick a settled side and hopefully that will help us win a few games.
Perennial slow starters Everton have kicked that habit this season and have started tremendously well. Marouane Fellaini appears to be realising the obvious potential he has displayed in flashes over the years. The Belgium international has been unplayable this season and it’s quite lucky for us that he misses tomorrow’s game through injury. David Moyes has put together what might be his best side this season. Their left flank of Leighton Baines and Steven Pienaar is one of the best in the league. A potent supply line for their Croatian frontman Jelavic. His finishing ability is nothing short of frightening. I think Everton will be knocking on the door of the Champions League qualifying positions this year.
WBA 3 (Morrison, Gera, Mulumbu)
QPR 2 (Taarabt, Granero)
Team: Cesar, Ferdinan, Hill (Traore), Nelsen, Bosingwa, Park J-Sung, Taarabt, Wright-Phillips (Mackie), Granero, Mbia (Hoilett), Zamora.
Wigan 2 (Kone, Di Santo)
Everton 2 (Jelavic, Baines pen)
Team: Howard, Baines, Heitinga (Distin), Jagielka, Neville (Anichebe), Coleman, Osman, Pienaar, Fellaini, Jelavic, Mirallas (Naismith).
QPR Team News:
Andy Johnson and Fabio are sidelined. Samba Diakite returns from suspension having missed the West Brom game.
My possible line up:
Bosingwa – Nelsen – Mbia – Traore
Diakite – Faurlin – Granero
Taarabt – Zamora – Hoilett
Player to watch: Adel Taarabt
Keep playing this boy because let’s face it we’re a much better side with him in it. The last two games saw Taarabt produce two spectacular goals, the only positives from those very disappointing defeats to West Ham and West Brom. A few weeks ago I was sceptical about the idea of playing Taarabt and Junior Hoilett in the same side, believing Mark Hughes would opt out of playing two playmakers fairly similar in style. However, after witnessing many a poor midfield performance from Shaun Wright-Phillips and Park Ji-Sung this season, the aforementioned players (Taarabt and Hoilett) surely can’t do any worse than two ageing Premier League stalwarts. Out with the old and in with the new.
Everton Team News:
The Toffees will be without Marouane Fellaini who is out with a knee injury. Tony Hibbert and Darron Gibson are also ruled out.
Possible line up:
Coleman – Jagielka – Distin – Baines
Mirallas – Osman – Neville – Pienaar
Jelavic – Anichebe
Player to watch: Leighton Baines
Leighton Baines has been identified as the player to watch ahead of tomorrows match against Everton.
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The Stat Attack
Queens Park Rangers: DLLLL
HEAD 2 HEAD
Queens Park Rangers: 15
LAST TIME OUT
Premier League – 03/03/12
QPR 1 (Zamora)
Everton 1 (Drenthe)
Team: Kenny, Hill, Traore, Ferdinand, Onuoha, Derry, Taarabt (Mackie), Buzaky, Barton, Wright-Phillips, Zamora
Referee: John Moss
Assistants: J Flynn & C Breakspear
Fourth Official: P Dowd
John Moss is the match official for tomorrow’s game. Last season Moss issued 112 yellow cards and 11 red cards in 32 games.
I’ve got a good feeling about tomorrow’s game, despite our poor form. I look at our side and even though we’ve been abysmal, I think it is only a matter of time before we register our first league win. Blind optimism tells me tomorrow will be it.
Where: Emirates Stadium